By Zachary Roman
Haliburton County Public Library is set to begin testing its curbside pickup pilot plan on June 25 at its Dysart branch which is located at 78 Maple Avenue in Haliburton. The decision to start offering curbside pickup was made at a June 10 regular library board meeting which was held via online video conferencing software Zoom.
According to a letter to the library board from HCPL’s CEO Bessie Sullivan the curbside pickup plan developed by the administration staff of HCPL involves a no touch arm’s length system for people to pick up materials. She also said the plan can be accomplished with their current number of staff.
At the library board’s May 27 meeting Sullivan’s plan to test out curbside pickup at 30 minute intervals was discussed – but the board pushed back the discussion to the June 10 meeting after deciding that they needed more time to prepare the plan.
When the plan was brought up again at the June 10 meeting Andrea Roberts vice chair of the library board said she wanted to start it but struggled to see why it would take 30 minutes per patron. “I really think that we should be trying to do [curbside pickup]” said Roberts. “I personally feel it could all be done in 15 minutes at least get [four orders out] an hour otherwise it's too slow.”
Board member Lisa Schell seconded Roberts’s opinion. “I think it's time to try this even if it is just as a pilot for two weeks” said Schell. “I found the 30 minutes to be a bit excessive.”
Sullivan proposed a compromise of 20-minute intervals to which the board eventually agreed. “So that’s three an hour just to get our groove” said Sullivan. “Our plan is to increase as soon as we can safely do so.”
Sullivan said she would like to get the intervals down to 15 minutes. The board agreed another meeting would not be necessary to make this change so they gave her discretion to change the pickup interval safely as she sees fit.
Sullivan is planning on a two-week trial of the curbside pickup pilot at the Dysart branch. If that goes well she said the next branch to implement curbside pickup would be Minden’s because of the large number of people it serves.
Anyone in the county is allowed to arrange to pick up books from the Dysart branch – no matter which branch they usually go to. Starting June 25 library patrons can reserve books for curbside pickup at the Dysart branch via phone email or the library’s website.